But really. We were at our Ward Mission Leader's house for correlation meeting last night and all the sudden the tornado sirens start going off... We turned on the news and sure enough there was a tornado warning for Oklahoma county! Luckily the storm was out in Luther (which is just north of Choctaw so it's pretty far east) so we didn't have to worry. We were all ready to head underground though! It's my first official tornado warning as a missionary in OK, so the fact that it took 15 months and that it happened in December is super bizarre. But such is the weather in Okie-home-a!
ALOOOHA FAMILY AND FRIENDS!!!
This week was WONDERFUL! We've been doing a lot of service, and our mission president announced that they want us missionaries using the justserve.org website to serve for 10 hours each week. That might be kind of tricky because we're super busy but I love service so it should be fun! We were able to serve for the Salvation Army and help them process gifts for Christmas and then we set up for the ward Christmas party (it was 3 members and 6 missionaries... so it was good we were there). I got to wear pants a LOT though. No complaints there!
We also had our Christmas mission conference that included half of the mission. I got to see some old friends and everything they trained on was exactly what we needed. It was a spiritual and physical feast (because there was good food as well)! President Walkenhorst talked a lot about cleansing the inner vessel and working with members. He said that our goal should not be to get referrals, but to teach them how to be member missionaries. Sometimes I do that backwards, and it doesn't work as good :). But basically I'm just really really grateful that I can be a missionary and learn at the feet of inspired leaders and spiritual giants that really help me and inspire me to be the best I can. I'm also really grateful that I have been able to learn how to recognize the Spirit in general because that is something that I wasn't very good at before or even at the beginning of my mission. It's something that has come as I have diligently prayed and recorded spiritual experiences and sought to have them. Since I have done that I can see exactly when I have the Spirit and when I do not. It's something that's impossible to describe but easy to understand once you've experienced it. So if you haven't been able to feel or recognize the Spirit in your life I encourage you to start learning now, because it will become like a GPS that will give you direction in all that you do.
Also we had our ward Christmas party this week! We had our own missionary table with "He is the Gift" all set up and rolling. A lot of members brought friends that ate the food and had a great experience. Maggie also came and just LOVED it, especially the program featuring a young couple with their own baby. The next day we brought Maggie to a baptism and she had tears streaming down her face the whole time. I know that she felt the Spirit and is excited for her own baptism.
I'm grateful for all of you and your support and examples to me. I love you and I hope that as we move closer to Christmas you can feel the Spirit that accompanies this special season.
Con much carino y amor,
1. Salvation Army service! Courtney drove us and the elders down there. She went to BYUH too, so she's automatically really cool in my book.
2. Our table at the ward Christmas party. #sharethegift!
3. When the tornado sirens went off we did the natural thing, went outside and looked at the sky :). Pretty cool, huh?